History of the Association & Project Development
How it all began
Our association Nepal Trust Austria was founded in 2002 by the passionate mountaineers and Nepal lovers Dipl. Ing. Eduard Frosch, Helmut Schmied and Uwe Wobrovski. The original aim of the association was to establish a sustainable health care system in the westernmost district of Nepal, Humla, and especially in its administrative district Simikot. Together with our local partner organization NAPO - Nepal Austria Partner Organization and here above all Tsepal Dorje Lama, we have come closer to this goal step by step in the past 18 years: the hospital in Simikot was saved from decay, renovated and equipped with important medical equipment.
Health care for everyone
It was very important to the founding fathers of the association that even the poorest of the poor would receive medical health care. Nepal Trust Austria provided medical staff and organized health camps at which more than 8,000 people from remote villages received medical treatment. The first maternity ward in the entire region was built, medical equipment was financed, midwives were hired. Thanks to Nepal Trust Austria, several hundred newborns were able to see the light of day in safety and with the best possible care.
By now the Nepalese government has recognized the importance of basic medical care and also started providing doctors, nurses and midwives – this was the association’s chance to change and expand its focus.
Tackling problems at the roots
With time, it became evident that many medical problems could not be solved without social change. Therefore, in 2015, it was decided to reset the priorities of the association's work and focus on improving the living situation of women and girls.
In order to better understand the living conditions of the female population in Western Nepal and to be able to change them in a positive direction together with those affected, the project was preceded by a comprehensive, participatory social research study that lasted several months.
Participants were recognized as experts of their own lives and were actively involved in the entire project planning process.
In a collaborative process, socio-economic problems, gender-specific challenges, opportunities and possibilities were identified and solution options were developed.
This is how our project Mahila Avaz - Women's Voice was born; grown from the wealth of ideas of affected women and girls, modified by the knowledge and experience of today's project team.
Today, our project still lives from the active participation of its target group - because only those who help to build and co-determine change with their own strength and ideas can be a part of it.